Kanto reigns supreme amongst our target market of Tokyoites looking to escape the city. Amongst our clients, interest lies exclusively to the West of Tokyo, though we are very much aware of those looking around the East side. For example, Southern Chiba and Central Tochigi frequently come up in conversation.
There are also 3 train lines that our clientele is interested in – the Chuo, Tokaido, and Takasaki lines – and all municipalities of interest are reachable in under 90 minutes by bullet train.
Connectivity is a frequent topic of discussion as most clients are in a position to work remotely for a large percent of their duties, but are conversely looking to also quickly disconnect and get their hands dirty on projects or adventures.
That we have little traction in the Kansai region is not surprising, again considering our focus on Tokyo-area residents; Fukuoka is a bit far, but given it’s prominence as an IT hub and that we deal with a good number of people in the IT sector, is not too surprising; Shikoku is, however, a bit of a curve-ball as it is much easier to go considerably further off-the-grid there than Kanto and we weren’t expecting people to want to go that far down the rabbit hole so quickly. We’ll have to dig into that deeper over the coming months.
Boiled down, our clients (which are not universally representative) are interested in exurban and rural locations with easy access to Tokyo but which are far enough out to afford additional experiences on top of those available in the metro area. We call this convenient inaka, and expect it to be a big part of the initial wave of those looking to expand their horizons in Japan’s countryside.